The C9 League is an alliance of nine universities in mainland China, which includes Tsinghua University, Peking University, Harbin Institute of Technology, University of Science and Technology of China, Fudan University, Zhejiang University, Nanjing University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University and Xi'an Jiao Tong University. Together they account for 3% of the country's researchers but receive 10% of national research expenditures. They produce 20% of the academic publications and 30% of total citations.
|Tsinghua University||1911||Ministry of Education (MOE)|
|Peking University||1898||Ministry of Education (MOE)|
|Harbin Institute of Technology (HIT)||1920||Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT)|
|University of Science and Technology of China (USTC)||1958||Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS)|
|Fudan University||1905||Ministry of Education (MOE)|
|Zhejiang University||1897||Ministry of Education (MOE)|
|Nanjing University||1902||Ministry of Education (MOE)|
|Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU)||1896||Ministry of Education (MOE)|
|Xi'an Jiao Tong University (XJTU)||1896||Ministry of Education (MOE)|
- Peking University and Tsinghua University are in Beijing, the capital and a municipality of China.
- Fudan University and Shanghai Jiao Tong University are in Shanghai, a economic center and a municipality of China.
- Nanjing University is in Nanjing of Jiangsu province. University of Science and Technology of China is in Hefei of Anhui province. Zhejiang University is in Hangzhou of Zhejiang province. These five universities (including Fudan and SJTU) are in the greater Yangtze River Delta region.
- Xi'an Jiao Tong University is in Xi'an of Shaanxi province, a key city in West China.
- Harbin Institute of Technology consists of three campuses: Harbin campus in Heilongjiang province in Northeast China, Weihai campus in Shandong province in eastern coastal region of East China, and Shenzhen campus in Guangdong province in South Central China.
On May 4, 1998, Project 985 was initiated by the Chinese government in order to advance the higher education system. In the first phase, the nine universities were selected and allocated funding for an initial period of three years. On October 10, 2009, these nine universities made up the C9 League. The league was attempting to create a group that is pitched as China's equivalence of Ivy League which comprises some of the prominent universities in USA, although it is in fact mainly athletic in nature.
The aim of the C9 is to communicate with each other in order to foster better students and share their resources, including campuses, teachers, and so on. More importantly, they have committed themselves to world-class excellence. The establishment of the C9 League has been welcomed by Chinese public opinion and its central idea of building world-class universities has been well supported by both the government and society. Other universities outside the C9 League designated by the central government with the goal of reaching world class include National University of Defense Technology, Renmin University of China, and Wuhan University.
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- "Eastern stars: Universities of China's C9 League excel in select fields".
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